Day 16 in Sri Lanka

Hi folks,

I’m back to Colombo after visiting my family in Kurunegala. By now u should have received an email inviting u to check out the photos I added to the online gallery.

Um, let’s see. Where to start.

So I took a train to Kurunegala. Pretty laid back, actually. I love travelling by train, watching the scenery sort of whiz by. It seems a lot safer than driving here, that’s for sure. The motorists here are absolutely psychotic, and could give a New York cabbie a run for his money.

I arrived in Kurunegala late monday evening, and spent some time with my family. The following day, I took a walk around the village with my aunt. Two things come to mind as I recall that experience: 1) everyone recognized me, because I used to live there as a kid and 2) if I thought being stared at in Colombo because of my dreads was bad, I was in for it in the village. So it was similar to being some kind of celebrity. The village (Thiragama) was pretty laid back. I spent my days either reading, or walking around. The food was great. At night, I took a nude “shower” by the well, if u consider using a bucket a shower. It was deliciously cold, and helped me shed layers of sweat that one inevitably accumulates while there. One night, it rained heavily, and I decided to take my shower under the drainspout. I had my cousin turn off all the lights, and I stripped again, and it was freakin’ amazing! I can’t even convey what that feels like in words. To be surrounded by inky black night, with a storm raging above you, immersed in yummy cold water is totally out of this world, yet so much part of this world.

Part of Kurunegala’s attraction is this huge rock called “Athugalle.” A couple years ago, the Buddhist Ministry built a huge Buddha statue up on top, right in front of all the radio/tv/mobile phone antennas perched up there. Quite the juxtaposition, actually! Anyway, I went there with my aunt Susila and my cousin Dilini. We checked out the statue and the view, and then started walking back down. There was a little shop and we picked up some cookies. As we continued our descent, we were suddenly appoached by a gang of monkeys, all of whom wanted some cookies. So Susila threw one a cookie, but then we were swarmed. One of them jumped up on me, and I raised my knee in defense to knock it off. Seconds later, another came charging out of the brush, teeth bared aggressively. I had to make all sorts of noise and hide the cookies before those monkeys would leave us alone.

Let’s see, I’m back in Colombo now. The baptism of my godchild is tomorrow. I’ll let u know how that goes. We all know how devoutly Roman Catholic I am. Hee hee.

Miss u all a bunch,



Posted: August 7th, 2004
Categories: culture, travel
Tags: , ,
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